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Isn't a Culture Victory Redundant?

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by RuleroftheHex, May 4, 2015.

  1. RuleroftheHex

    RuleroftheHex Chieftain

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    Culture victories feel redundant to me. To succeed culturally, you need a high tech rate, good faith output, and tall cities. Realistically, these are all values represented in a Science victory. Culture victories don't differ much from SVs, with the main difference being Specialist focus. But, if Culture victories barely change from Science victories, aren't they redundant?
     
  2. Amrunril

    Amrunril Warlord

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    There's definitely a lot of overlap between science and culture victories. That said, there are also some distinctions. A culture victory really requires a strong, balanced empire throughout most of the game, one that can fill out multiple policy trees, compete for key wonders and pass important world congress resolutions. In return, it can get away with a little less science, though not much less, as Civ V does really revolve around growth and science no matter what victory condition you pursue. In some sense, culture victory is more like diplomatic and domination victories- victories that require conclusively beating the other players in one aspect of the game- than like a science victory, which just requires beating the other players across a finish line by one turn.
    Additionally, even if culture victory does require mostly the same resources as science, it often follows a different pathway and generally has a different feel to it. This may not mean much from a balance perspective, but it does add quite a bit of variety and replayability to the game (especially for casual players who may not want to win the same victory type more than once or twice, but also for anyone who enjoys the ability to experiment with different strategies).
     
  3. Acken

    Acken Chieftain

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    Overlap with science is also true for diplomacy and you could say late game domination. That's the nature of Civ5 due to a rather linear tech tree.

    There's still a good amount of difference in culture for it to be a different challenge.
    What the victory could get are somewhat more options to raise and fight tourism and like every victory conditions a smoother science curve.
     
  4. RuleroftheHex

    RuleroftheHex Chieftain

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    Well, look at other victory types. DiploV doesn't require a high tech rate, althoug it does help. DomV doesn't require very much food, since much of your time goes into gold and unit production. But SV and CV need both, which is really what causes overlap. And, while DomV and DiploV both have entirely unique policy trees (Honor and Patronage, respectively), SV and CV both rely on largely similar policy trees. Since Aesthetics is largely unneccessary for CV until late, SV and CV follow the same policy track. Likewise, they follow the same techs, with CV slightly prioritizing Guilds over rushing to Education. The fact that their gameplay styles are interchangable means that, for the most part, they are overlapping.

    For DiploV, science is less of a priority than for, say, DomV. There is variation between DiploV and other VCs, as with DomV.
     
  5. Acken

    Acken Chieftain

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    Well that's when you don't try to get a good time for Diplo then. Once you start to be competitive about it DiploV is a mini science victory. Even more so than culture.
    Same for late game domination... you'll have the exact same game as science up to your desired tech like artillery. If you go at war with crossbows Rationalism won't be interesting. If you plan for artillery and bombers then it becomes a good choice.

    That's because unlocking what you need to achieve victories largely pass through the tech tree or science. As soon as reaching late game techs are necessary for your victory, the optimal pathway involves similar strategies as science up to a point.
     
  6. Delnar_Ersike

    Delnar_Ersike Chieftain

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    Now that I think about it, I'd actually say vanilla Civ5's cultural victory is better than BNW's, even if it is much simpler (and possibly also, much more boring). The main reason is that tourism, the yield with which BNW's CV is won, only becomes prominent towards the end of the tech tree and with ideologies (which require a quick entrance into Modern Era), which is why science is important for BNW's CV. By contrast, vanilla's CV primarily needed culture, a yield that is earned throughout the entire game, plus an extra shot of hammers in a single city to build the Utopia project. I could easily remember vanilla Civ5 games where I wasn't science leader but still pulled off a cultural victory because I ended up filling 3.5 policy trees before Industrial with my huge culture and could start working on a Utopia project before anyone could even start working on Apollo Program.
     
  7. joncnunn

    joncnunn Senior Java Wizard Moderator

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    This is a symptom of Science is King. Diplomatic victory is even more an alternative Science victory than BNW cultural.
    Original Cultural victory didn't have this issue, but was replaced because it was extremely boring.
     
  8. beetle

    beetle Chieftain

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    What difficulty are you playing at? I can sometimes win Deity SV, but CV even at immortal has eluded me. Both things are because my games go long (350+ turns), but that is fun too.
     
  9. RuleroftheHex

    RuleroftheHex Chieftain

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    Difficulty is irrelevant. Joncnunn is right, this is a problem throughout all difficulty levels. The problem is that science has too much power over other game concepts, notably gold, production and Unit building. All in all, it makes focus on Science the most important thing, even for CV. This is part of the reason that Rationalism is so strong. Really, all VCs are similar to each other because they all need science.
     
  10. wayneb64

    wayneb64 Chieftain

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    I am struggling with Culture in my Immortal games as well. There is always one AI that is just off the charts with culture and tourism. CV seems to me like the most difficult victory as there as so many things to take into account. I certainly don't see it as redundant. In fact, much like science is important to all victories I would counter that culture is almost as important at the higher difficulties as you get crushed in the final stages of the game with unhappiness if you don't excel at culture.

    Does it count as a true CV if you take out the leader with military first? I won my only Immortal CV when the AI I had beaten culturally, killed off the only other AI who I could not catch culturally. I had my spaceship parts parked in my capitol as he only needed one part to win himself. DV seems to easy to me as all you need is a gold engine to buy all the CSs and wait for the final vote. That usually happens before SV is possible by the AIs.
     
  11. RuleroftheHex

    RuleroftheHex Chieftain

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    DiploV still needs science. Without science, it lacks access to more trade routes, can't acquire new gold buildings, and has to defend its trade routes with weaker units.

    CV is incredibly redundant, because it's hard to win a CV without Hotels, Airports, etc. You need a high science rate to stay "in" in terms of culture, and not get blown away by culture buildings that the AI spams. Also, culture is less important since a few Ideological tenets and happiness is cured. Also, playing a CV, you tend to play tall, so happiness is even less of an issue. If you're a tile-based CV civ, like France (to some extent) or Poly, you don't have any issue with Ideology unhappiness.
     
  12. reddishrecue

    reddishrecue Chieftain

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    Cultural victories are fun only when you're using France and Brazil becauseof their uniqueness in tourism. There could be other good civilizations out there that are good at tourism can work out also. Maybe India or Poland can maybe good because of the mughal fort with flight and solidarity from Poland. Founding a religion with many religious buildings and the sacred sites reformation belief can also increase tourism output particularly if you have a lot of cities with a lot of religious buildings in a lot of cities.
     
  13. RuleroftheHex

    RuleroftheHex Chieftain

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    I find that those approaches make CV even less fun than it already is. Mughal Forts are useless to Tourism, because they are a solid +2 in 4ish cities, which isn't a meaningful bonus. France and Brazil are cliched already, because they have the only CV-related UAs. Poland's Solidarity fits any VC, not just CV. Sacred Sites takes too long to get to, so you really can't get a CV that way either.

    What I've just said proves something: CV, like SV, is streamlined. The most effective strategies are conventional and very similar to SV.
     
  14. reddishrecue

    reddishrecue Chieftain

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    Most Cvs are boring.
     
  15. RuleroftheHex

    RuleroftheHex Chieftain

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    I wasn't saying that they would be fun. I was saying that Mughal Forts can make it MORE boring. That's largely irrelevant here. Really, the point is that CVs and DomVs are repurposed SVs.
     
  16. Acken

    Acken Chieftain

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    If you spend some time in HoF/Gotm forums you'll see that diploV is also a science victory in disguise. Even more so than a CV due to less stuff to make and less strategies available.
     
  17. beetle

    beetle Chieftain

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    Well, what really matter is if the difficulty level is giving you a challenge. If SV is easy, sure CV might be easy too. But if you are struggling with SV, you will probably find CV to be even tougher.
     
  18. RuleroftheHex

    RuleroftheHex Chieftain

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    The difficulty isn't really a part of it. The point is that the CV SPs, tech path and growth style mimic those of SV.
     
  19. Noblosh

    Noblosh Chieftain

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    You seem so shocked to realize that progress means everything. Ofc you're not supposed to win the game if you're behind in tech as that wouldn't represent reality at all.
    Also I can argue that ideologies are redundant too: you get access to each in the same way, you get all the tenents in the same way, each ideology has at least a tourism tenent, a military tenent, a happiness tenent and an espionage one and any of them can produce unhappiness.
    You choose them based on your current setting and fantasy, just as you choose victory types.

    And you don't need to go tall if you're going for CV. More cities mean more slots for artifacts and more potential for workable landmarks.
     
  20. beetle

    beetle Chieftain

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    Yes, all the VC require a good tech rate. But your OP premise is false.

    SV requires all but a handful of techs. CV and DV just need the top line of the tech tree for Internet and Globalization (respectfully).

    When, it comes to social policies, SV is straightforward since all you need is the Rationalism Tree. As you observe, CV and DV need to tech fast too, so they really want full Rationalism as well.

    DV is has it much easier than CV since only a few Patronage policies are key, and you can pick up two out of three just waiting for Rationalism to unlock. So, as compare to SV, DV requires one more policy, but less than half the Information Era techs.

    In a challenging game (which is why difficulty level is relevant) CV needs the full Aesthetics tree as well as full Rationalism (as well at the six Ideology tenets needs for any SV). Added to this is the buffs AI get for Wonder Building and to culture (which, again, is why difficulty level is relevant).

    Yes, CV requires a good tech rate. But, no, CV are very different than SV. It is not just specialists, but having to fill out a whole other policy tree. The extra competition from the AI is quite significant. At Deity, often the main challenge to SV is the time pressure from an AI (or two) getting close to CV.
     

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